The streaming juggernaut may start offering game bundles as early as 2022.
That’s right — Netflix has dropped little nets on the world of gaming, in a bid to expand its interactive content that has raked in record numbers in the past. Maybe the choose-your-own-adventure film Bandersnatch and the interactive survival series You Vs. Wild were their first foray into it, but Netflix is definitely warming up for a bigger splash.
The first clue was laid out last Friday when online news outfit The Information released a report that said Netflix “is looking to hire an executive to oversee an expansion into videogames,” and that the streaming titan is looking into “offering a bundle of games” akin to Apple Arcade.
Reuters also wrote a similar report hours later, which pretty much serves as a confirmation, though both pieces were keen to cite that plans are “very much in flux.”
And then, another report rose, this time coming from Axios, who appended earlier reports with the scoop that the games that Netflix plans to release would include both licensed intellectual properties and content commissioned from independent game studios. They’re also the ones who pinned a date on the plan, saying it’s “possibly launching in 2022.”
Netflix’s silence on the matter is deafening, but the numbers speak for themselves. With a subscriber base that’s 200-million strong, Netflix definitely has the market to make interactive games for. Besides, Netflix’s vast library of content has already proven that it can be adapted into video games, or vice versa.
Just look at their title, “The Witcher,” for example. The show premiered in December 2019, and by the end of the month, the fantasy drama passed “The Mandalorian” as the most in-demand TV series across all streaming platforms. Around the same time, sales of Witcher 3: Wild Hunt, which was originally released in 2018, rose by a whopping 554% from the previous year due to renewed interest brought by Netflix.
The video game industry is volatile, and it’s still too early to tell with so little information revealed. However, if anyone can weather the incursion before either flourishing or folding, it’s going to be Netflix.